From a program recorded on July 16, 1980, Charles Amirkhanian introduces the work of the French actor and singer, Caroline Gautier. She talks about her investigation of early examples of spoken ballads or musical declamations. To highlight her comments Amirkhanian presents three seldom performed works, composed by Robert Schumann, and performed by Gautier and pianist Michaël Lévinas. Gautier provides the story behind each piece as well as describing how her acting talent is incorporated into... Topics: Morning Concert Series, Music, Interview, Classical Music
Jon Gibson performs three movements from his five movement, 1979, composition, “Criss x Cross,” after which he discusses the piece with program host, Charles Amirkhanian. This somewhat aleatoric work apparently follows a score in which the notes are indicated without any rhythmic instructions, and much of the phrasing and duration of the notes is improvised. The work is influenced by Gibson’s interest in bagpipe music and the pibrochs of the Scottish Highlands, although one can also see... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Music, New Music, Saxophone music
Charles Amirkhanian discusses the politics of new music in the Bay Area, with reference to the unsympathetic criticism, leveled at avant-garde artists such as John Cage and Merce Cunningham, by music critics at the New York Time and San Francisco Chronicle, among others. Amirkhanian argues that while Bay Area audiences clearly support the radical styles of the avant-garde, the local papers of note only employ music critics that favor the contemporary classical music of more academically... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Lecture, Panel Discussion, New Music
From a recording made in May of 1991, Charles Amirkhanian interviews Paul Dresher about his theatrical production, “Pioneer”, which "celebrates and exposes American explorers and the myths of the pioneering spirit." Several songs from the production are also heard. The two also discuss the difficulties in portraying offensive attitudes such as racial bigotry and the history of American colonialism. In the second half of the program is Charles and Paul are joined by Gerald Oshita... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, Music Theatre
In this program, recorded in May of 1979, New York composer Philip Corner is the guest of Charles Amirkhanian. He discusses his music in preparation for his appearance at the Exploratorium in San Francisco as part of the Speaking of Music series of lecture/performances. As a member of the faculty of Livingston College (Rutgers University), Corner continued his provocative, improvisation-oriented, music making based on highly original, open-ended, beautifully handwritten, performance notations... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Music, Interview, Percussion music, Improvisation
This program, recorded on March 10, 1988, begins with Charles Amirkhanian’s brief interview with composer Harvey Sollberger in which they discuss two of Sollberger’s works, “Persian Golf” and “Three or Four Things I Know About the Oboe.” The two are then joined by composer John Adams for a discussion about the state of New Music in the San Francisco Bay Area. The bulk of the program is then dedicated to John Adams’ blockbuster opera “Nixon in China.” This masterwork of... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interviews, Opera, 20th Century Classical
Music of J.S. Bach and his sons, C.P.E, Bach and the “English” John Christian Bach, and their influence on Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven, all in performances which attempt to approximate the sounds that audiences of the period might have experienced. Some listeners will prefer these performances, others will not; yet they all will offer insights into how the majesty of Bach led to the magic of Mozart. (from KPFA Folio). Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Music, Classical Music
Host Sarah Cahill presents a diverse number of musical settings of poems by the renowned American poet Emily Dickinson. Juxtaposed settings by Aaron Copland, John Adams, George Perle and Ernst Bacon reveal each composer’s unique approach to handling Dickinson’s enigmatic work. While Adams’s well-known “Twelve Poems of Emily Dickinson” is featured in its entirety, seldom-heard work by Perle and Bacon offers a different take not only on the text, but on the author’s status as... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Music, Art Songs
In honor of her 70th birthday, Betty Freeman appears on KPFA's Morning Concert, hosted by Charles Amirkhanian. Freeman shares anecdotes from her long career, first as a budding pianist and then as a supporter of contemporary composers such as Harry Partch, John Cage, and La Monte Young. Freeman also describes her work as a photographer of composers, and gives her opinions about listening to and loving new music. Musical excerpts include "Goldberg Variations" by J. S. Bach, and... Topics: interviews, KPFA Morning Concert series, Betty Freeman, New Music
Fountain pens were the early 20th Century equivalent of the laptop computer. Allowing individuals the ability to write without being tied to a desk and inkwell, this unique American invention came to symbolize literacy for the man or woman who owned and carried one. Recently, as computer technology has threatened to wipe out the individual personality of the handwritten word, hoards of collectors have rediscovered the joy of writing with new and vintage instruments which can vary the width of... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Other Finds, Fountain Pens
Charles Amirkhanian interviews William Ward on the subject of one of his oratorios, Fray Junípero Serra, a Franciscan priest who founded many of the Catholic Missions in California. Amirkhanian also questions Ward on his own experiences as a student and teacher of music in the United States. Dr. William R. Ward holds a Ph.D. degree from the Eastman School of Music, and for many years served as chairman of the Music Department of San Francisco State University and later as the Associate Dean of... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, Music, 20th Century Classical
Charles Amirkhanian interviews Anne Draffkorn Kilmer, Professor of Assyriology at the University of California at Berkeley, about an LP ”Sounds from silence; Recent discoveries in ancient Near Eastern music” which documents a previously unknown musical composition dating from around 1400 BC. This ancient fertility hymn from Ugarit caused an international sensation when modern research made available for the first time, the knowledge necessary for the translation of ancient clay tablets... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, Ancient Music
In an interview, recorded on June 22, 1979, Charles Amirkhanian talks with the Mexican composer Arturo Salinas. Born in Monterrey, Mexico, Salinas studied composition with Robert Cogan at the New England Conservatory, ethnomusicology with Charles Boilès in Montreal, electro-acoustic music and microtonality with Jean-Etienne Marie in Paris, and orchestral conducting with Igor Markevitch. Included in this program is a complete performance of his “Memoire Imarcescible”, an electro-acoustic... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, Music, Microtonal Music
From a recording made in July of 1988, Charles Amirkhanian interviews Lawrence Weschler, essayist for the New Yorker Magazine and grandson of composer Ernst Toch. They discusses his book “Shapinsky's Karma, Boggs's Bill, and Other True-Life Tales ”, which profiles six people who unexpectedly changed the direction of their lives. These include the story of James Boggs who blurred the lines between art and commerce by painting exquisite copies of $100 bills and then insisted on spending them,... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview, Modern Art, Lawrence Weschler
When the ROVA Saxophone Quartet toured the Soviet Union in the mid-1980s, it was the enterprising and irrepressible Alexander Kan who invited the group and organized the visit against improbable odds. In 1988 KPFA turned the tables and invited Mr. Kan to its studio for a discussion. He was the leading Soviet producer of new music, avant-garde jazz, and experimental rock. The founder of the Leningrad Contemporary Music Club, which throughout the late 1970s until it was banned in the 1980s,... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Music, Interview, Orchestral Music, Jazz
From September 4, 1992, Charles Amirkhanian introduces a retrospective on the life of composer John Cage, whose work has had a great influence on artistic thought in the 20th Century, and who had just passed away a few weeks before what would have been his 80th birthday on September 5th 1992. Richard Friedman, and composer, author, and critic Charles Shere join in the commentary, and archival recordings of Cage’s voice complete the festivities. Also heard during this program are live... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Documentary, New Music, John Cage
Recorded on February 28, 1992, Charles Amirkhanian interviews composer Julia Wolfe, and plays a selection of her works. Wolfe discuses the origins of several of the rather unusual titles for her compositions. We then hear “The Vermeer Room” which is scored for 16 instruments as well as her string quartet “Four Marys.” This later work, we learn, was inspired by a Scottish folk tune yet fails to quote any of the original work or even reference Scottish folk music. The second half of the... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Music, Interview, Microtonal music, Chamber music, New Music
Born in Prague in 1921, composer Karel Husa won the Pulitzer Prize for music in 1969, for his third String Quartet. On February 7, 1975 he was in Berkeley to attend a conference of college band directors and stopped by the KPFA studio to talk with KPFA Music Director Charles Amirkhanian and Charles Shere, music critic with the Oakland Tribune. The three of them discuss the phenomena of university bands and how they are a breeding ground for young and enthusiastic wind players, who should... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, Karel Husa
Charles Amirkhanian interviews Richard Felciano, a member of the faculty at UC Berkeley, whose album “The Music of Richard Felciano”, has been issued by Composers Recordings, Inc. Felciano introduces a number of his works including a December 1975 live performance of a piece for 14 carillons located in the Dallas-Fort Worth area all playing simultaneously. Felciano also discusses the challenges facing contemporary composers of new music. Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, New Music, Richard...
Ron Erickson interviews musicologist Hans Moldenhauer, who with his wife Rosaleen, has published a book on Anton Webern. Moldenhauer has also collected a significant archive of documents, manuscripts, and musical scores that encompass the history of music from the Middle Ages through the 20th Century, including a vast amount of materials pertaining to Webern and Schoenberg. The program concludes with a performance of the Spring and Summer concertos from Darius Milhaud’s “Four Seasons”... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, Hans Moldenhauer
American composer Benjamin Burwell Johnston was born March 15, 1926 in Macon, GA. Living briefly in Berkeley, CA, in 1950, he was associated with Harry Partch and studied at the University of California and Mills College. From 1951 to 1983 he taught at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In this program, recorded in 1981, Johnston is interviewed by Charles Amirkhanian about his career, compositions, and influences. A composer fundamentally partial to microtones, Johnston discusses... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Music, Interview, 20th Century Classical, Microtonal Music, Ben...
This three hour special "Marathon Mornings" program features Charles Amirkhanian interviewing John Adams on the occasion of his fortieth birthday. Along with an in-depth interview about his compositions, collaborators, and working as composer in residence with the San Francisco Symphony under Edo de Waart, Charles and Mr. Adams do some wonderful KPFA subscription plugs. The program features several shorter works, and full presentations of Mr. Adams' recordings with the SF Symphony of... Topics: Interview and Music, KPFA, Morning Concert series, 20th Century Classical, Orchestral Music, John...
Pianist Martha Anne Verbit performs live in the KPFA studio on the station’s Bösendorfer grand piano, and talks with Charles Amirkhanian about her excursions into the sensuous, mystical, and arcane reaches of early 20th century piano music, as well as giving biographical information about each of the composers featured in this concert. Verbit has recorded an album of music by Cyril Scott for Genesis Records, and is an expert performer of Scriabin’s music. She has given solo recitals at... favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite ( 1 reviews ) Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Martha Ann Verbit, Music, Interview, 20th Century Classical, Piano...
Charles Amirkhanian commemorates the genocide of the Armenian People by the Ottoman Turks in 1915 with music by the Chancel Choir of Pilgrim Armenian Congregational Church in Fresno California. Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, Classical Music, Armenian Music
On December 11, 1987 Leo Ornstein, one of the most important composer-pianists of the 20th century,celebrated his 95th birthday at his home in Green Bay, Wisconsin. In this program, Charles Amirkhanian takes a look at the career of this remarkable path-breaking musician whose early piano compositions, and performances of the most radical European composers of the day, shocked audiences throughout the U. S. in the period from 1912 to 1915. Included are several of his piano works performed by... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Leo Ornstein, Music, Interview, 20th Century Classical
From a program recorded on January 25, 1990, Charles Amirkhanian interviews the Chinese American composer, baritone saxophonist, and political activist, Fred Ho about a scheduled performance of his ballet “A Song for Manong”. A Harvard educated sociologist turned composer, Fred Ho’s music has been heavily influenced by the music of John Coltrane and Charlie Mingus as well as the politics of the Black Panther Party and the plight of American immigrants. In this brief interview he talks to... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, Jazz, Fred Ho
Composer-performer David Jaffe has bridged the gap between acoustic folk music and the world of cerebral computer music with a multi-stylistic approach. A lecturer at Stanford University, where much of his work is produced at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA). Jaffe also worked with neXt Computers on creating new types of music software. His composition Impossible Animals contains human voice timbres in the shape of carefully analyzed bird songs. He is interviewed... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, David Jaffe
Recorded on May 22, 1992, Charles Amirkhanian talks with Philip Glass about his upcoming concert with dancer Molissa Fenley benefiting the Tibetan Resettlement Project. Glass discusses his collaboration with Fenley, his interest in Buddhism and human rights in Tibet, as well as how he originally got into the music business (by breaking records for his father’s store), and his upcoming projects. Glass also relates the challenges of bringing experimental music into large concert halls, which... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, New Music, World Music, JazzMusic
John Zorn and Larry Ochs join Charles Amirkhanian to discuss and play a selection of Zorn’s compositions. Among the pieces heard is an excerpt from “Spillane” in which Zorn tries to capture some of the film noir sensibility that imbues the Mickey Spillane novels and the gritty New York City in which they are based, and which Zorn calls home. This is followed by a couple of excerpts from Zorn’s collaborative improvisational work “Cobra” for which he created a number of general rules... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, Jazz, Avant-Garde, John Zorn, Larry Ochs
This program, recorded on August 7, 1992, begins with a brief interview with choreographer Nancy Karp, who has collaborated with artist Carol Law and composer Ingram Marshall to produce several dance pieces which she describes for the host, Charles Amirkhanian. This is followed by a visit with pianist and composer Michael Harrison, who is perhaps best known for his work with just intonation and his Harmonic Piano. The unique design of the strings, hammers and pedals of the Harmonic Piano gives... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, Jazz
From a program originally broadcast on January 13, 1984, Charles Amirkhanian introduces avant-garde Dutch composer Louis Andriessen, and talks with him about his work “Velocity,” which had just been premiered by the San Francisco Symphony, where it was received with distrust by many of the more traditionally inclined members of the audience. In defense of his work Andriessen points out that unlike some American composers of minimal or repetitive music who according to Andriessen began to... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview, Music, New Music, 20th Century Classical
The last Morning Concert with Charles Amirkhanian at the helm kicks off with an interview with David Harrington of the Kronos Quartet. This interview was recorded just prior to a concert by the Quartet at the Theater Artaud that was to feature new compositions by Mr. Bungle and Thomas Mapfumo written for the Kronos Quartet. The various roles individual players have within the Quartet is described. The second half of the program is dedicated to taking phone calls from listeners reminiscing with... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview, 20th Century Classical, Avant-Garde, Charles Amirkhanian
From a program recorded in 1983, Charles Amirkhanian is joined in the KPFA studios by the Australian composer Vincent Plush, who was in the United States for an extended fellowship at Yale University. Amirkhanian questions Plush about his personal history and musical influences, as well as the current state of contemporary classical music in Australia. Plush describes a growing trend among younger Australian composers, who, inspired by the likes of Percy Grainger and Peter Sculthorpe, were... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, Music, 20th Century Classical, Vincent Plush
Recorded on December 16, 1980, Charles Amirkhanian interviews musician, composer, and conductor Robert Hughes. Topics discussed include working with Laurie Anderson on the world premiere of her work "Born, Never Asked". Fans of Anderson's later popular albums will recognize many of the musical themes running through this piece. The recording of the piece, made on May 17, 1980, features Anderson performing with the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra, an award winning group which was led... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, New Music, Performance Art, Robert Hughes
Recorded in 1978, Charles Amirkhanian interviews composer Janice Giteck about her recent European tour with the Port Costa Players in which they performed two of her works of ritual and musical theater, “Thunder like a White Bear Dancing” and “Callin’ Home Coyote”. Giteck discusses the influence that contributed to her work and the way in which they were received in different parts of Europe. Giteck also mentions her work with Berkeley’s Cazadero Music Camp, which during the Summer... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, Music, New Music, Janice Giteck
Carolie Shoemaker, composer, vocalist, and performance artist, hails from Seattle, where she has made a significant reputation as an innovative personality on the new music scene. Charles Amirkhanian interviews the visiting musician, who introduces selections from her work, including Yo(u) Tarzan, Stitch in Time, and other pieces. (from KPFA Folio) Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, Popular Music, Jazz, Carolie Shumaker
Charles Amirkhanian talks live in the KPFA studio, with the famed British born, Muslim singer Najma, about her upcoming concerts in the Bay Area, including a scheduled appearance with Amirkhanian at the San Francisco Exploratorium as part of their Speaking of Music series. Najma discusses the form of the ghazal, or love song, which is very popular in India and Pakistan, and which has a long and distinguished history. Her recordings, available in this country on the Shanachie label (Qareeb,... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, World Music, Najma Akhtar
Charles Hamm, noted historian and musicologist specializing in American music both serious and popular, visited KPFA in October 1980. In this program Hamm discusses developments in South African and American popular music with Charles Amirkhanian and Chris Strachwitz, illustrating his comments with many recorded examples. Hamm, who has been involved with the study of Zulu popular music in particular reports on what he discovered during a trip to Africa. In addition Hamm traces the manner in... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, Popular Music, World Music, Charles Hamm
English composer, Tim Souster, visited the San Francisco Bay Area in 1978 in order to produce a new composition at Stanford University’s internationally renowned computer music center, and during his stay happily agreed to be interviewed on KPFA. Charles Amirkhanian introduces Souster and his music during the course of a lively program, recorded at the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Center on October 3, 1978. “Driftwood Cortege” (1978), Souster’s computer piece, completed earlier that... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, Electro-Acoustic, Electronic, Tim Souster
Composer Conlon Nancarrow was born on October 27, 1912 in Texaskana, Arkansas and has lived in Mexico City since 1940. Richard Friedman speaks with him by telephone about his career, and introduces recent recordings of Nancarrow’s player piano music as well as works for live performers. Friedman also talks to Gordon Mumma who describes the early career of Nancarrow during which his music was largely unappreciated until Henry Cowell and John Cage took an interest in the composer’s studies... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, New Music, Conlon Nancarrow
In an interview recorded on January 18, 1979, Roger Nixon joins Charles Amirkhanian in the KPFA studio to introduce a selection of his music. Nixon was born in Tulare, California, in 1921, and studied composition at the University of California with Roger Sessions, Ernest Bloch, and Arthur Bliss. He later studied privately with Arnold Schoenberg, an experience that he has very fond memories of, many of which he relates during this interview. Starting in 1960, Mr. Nixon was on the music faculty... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, Music, 20th Century Classical, Band Music, Piano Music,...
Charles Amirkhanian interviews Dallas composer Jerry Hunt, who was scheduled to give a concert of live-electronic music soon after this program. The deviser of the enchantment procedure piece "Sur (Doctor) John Dee" will introduce live radio performances of his "Quaquaversal Transmission (Phalba overlay)," and Harmand Plane (reflex), as well as other selections such as "VOLTA (Kernal) In the middle of the interview with Hunt, electronic music composer Ivan Tcherepnin... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, Electro-Acoustic, Electronic, Jerry Hunt
In this brief interview with Charles Amirkhanian, recorded on Nov. 20, 1980, composer Charlemagne Palestine discusses how his early minimal drone works were a reaction to the dense compositional style of Karlheinz Stockhausen and John Cage, but have since evolved beyond basic minimalism to embrace a more complex sonority. He then goes on to give a description of his string piece for 11 performers, “Birth of a Sonority”, as well as his pieces for the Bösendorfer piano. Much of Palestine’s... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, Charlemagne Palestine
This edition of The Morning Concert features Parisian composer Eliane Radigue. Host Charles Amirkhanian explores Radigue’s background as a student of Pierre Schaeffer and Pierre Henry, her compositional technique involving synthesizers and tape recorders, and her life as a composer and Tibetan Buddhist. Radigue discusses the compositional and performing processes involved in her "combinatory" music, and explains how she has adapted to the lack of acceptance of her music in Paris.... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, Electro-Acoustic, Electronic, Soundscapes,...
Peter Sculthorpe (born April 19, 1929, in Launceton, Tasmania) is one of the most renowned composers living in Australia. His informed incorporation of Asian musical elements in his own output makes for a subtle and remarkable blend of styles and sonorities, sensitively accomplished. In San Francisco, his music has been championed by the Kronos Quartet, and on a visit to the Bay Area in 1983, in order to witness the premiere of a piece composed for that ensemble, Sculthorpe talked with Charles... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical Music, Peter Sculthorpe
Composer Vincent Plush, whose music in his native Australia enjoys a popularity akin to that of our own John Adams here, visits the KPFA studios to discuss his latest orchestra piece, "Pacifica", premiered June 14, 1986 by the Sydney Symphony under the direction of Zdenek Macal, at the Sydney Opera House on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of ABC-FM radio. Plush, born in Adelaide, South Australia, in 1950, introduces recent important music of other Australians and talks about the... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert Series, Interview and Music, 20th Century Classical, Vincent Plush
Guitar virtuoso David Tanenbaum discusses new works extending the language of the instrument with Charles Amirkhanian. (from KPFA Folio) Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, 20th Century Classical, Music, Guitar Music
In a program recorded on June 23, 1978, Charles Amirkhanian interviews San Francisco born composer David Cope. Born in 1941, Cope was at the time of this recording, a member of the faculty of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, but was for one year only teaching at the University of California at Santa Cruz. He is the author of “New Directions in Music,” “New Music Composition,” and “New Music Notation,” in which he sets out to catalogue new music notation in an attempt to codify or... Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Interview, 20th Century Classical, Chamber music, Instrumental...
Robert Ashley edited interview on KPFA's Morning Concert, 3 November 1983. In addition to talking about his interest in multi-track recording and opera, Ashley recalls that in the early Fifties in NYC there were only a half a dozen new music concerts in an entire season. How things have changed! Topics: KPFA-FM, Morning Concert series, Robert Ashley, Interview, Opera, New Music Source: Other Minds